Weigel on Root: ‘Just another hustler in the hustler kingdom’

Writes Dave Weigel, associate editor of Reason, for the American Spectator.

A little more than a month ago, after former Rep. Bob Barr started to edge into the Libertarian Party’s presidential race, I had an idea. Former Sen. Mike Gravel, a former Democrat, was already gunning for the nomination. It wasn’t every year that politicians of the Left and the Right ditched the parties they’d spent their entire careers in to become Libertarians. I started planning an event with both candidates, jokingly promoting it on Facebook as a “great debate.”

I got a call from Wayne Allyn Root.

“What’s this I’m hearing about a Libertarian debate?” Root said. “How are you going to have a Libertarian debate without the guy who’s going to be the nominee?”

He laughed, but he was serious about this. When I wrote an early prognosis on the Libertarian race, I said Root — a sports prognosticator and gambling guru who’s hosted TV shows, radio shows, and motivational speaking junkets — was running third behind Barr and movement speaker and author Mary Ruwart. Root had called to point out that he, not anyone else making a run at the nomination, was on the phone with delegates every spare minute he had. Every minute, at least, that he wasn’t spending with me. “I’m calling up every one of these people who will actually be voting for the nominee!” Root said. “I talk to 25 or 30 of them every day!”

Root did talk to those delegates, missing only a handful, leaving messages on their machines. And he charmed his way into the forum I set up with Barr and Gravel. I watched as reporters flipped out cameras and digital recorders to capture the wisdom of the former senator and the lion of the Clinton impeachment, then saw Root struggling to convince them that he, too was a frontrunner. The day after the forum, Root called to laugh about the Washington Post’s photo of the event, which cropped him out. “I’m going to frame that and put it on my wall.” He laughed again.

In Denver, as the LP settled on its ticket, Root got his bragging rights. On the party’s fifth ballot, he fell short of the party’s nomination but held a stockpile of delegate votes that made more than the difference between Barr and Ruwart. He took the stage, pumping his fists. “I want to spend the next year learning from the master,” Root said. “Barr/Root ’08! Come on, let’s bring it home!” The guy the national media mostly ignored ended up on the highest-polling (at this moment, at least) Libertarian ticket since the Reagan years.

Read the rest.

6 thoughts on “Weigel on Root: ‘Just another hustler in the hustler kingdom’

  1. Deran

    You think this recent wave of attacks on Barr and Root are bad. Just wait! Think back to 2000 and the trash talk abt Nader from the Democrats.

  2. pdsa

    W.A.Root also seems to be a patent troll who venue shops litigation. Root’s company, Winning Edge, owns U.S. Patent No. 6,260,019: Web-based prediction marketplace. Winning Edge is a subsidiary of the London based, Betbrokers PLC.

    Root contracted with General Patent Corporation International (GPCI), a patent licensing and enforcement firm headquartered in Suffern, NY, and retained a patent litigation boutique from Austin, TX, DiNovo Price Ellwanger & Hardy LLP.

    A patent infringement lawsuit was filed August 2006 in the Eastern District of Texas against Vegas Experts.com, Inc.,(Cleveland, OH) – Vegas Insider.com, (UK) – Preferred Picks Publications, (Weston, FL) – Don Best Sports, Sports Direct, Inc. (Las Vegas, NV) – and Covers Media Group Ltd.(Nova Scotia, CA).

    The patent lookis seriously lame to me. It’s a type of idea, which should never be patentable. It’s nothing more than a general layout for an aggregated for pay prediction serice which represents different touts not employed by the same business entity, and divvies up the applicable service fees to each. There is no underlying code, or anything else physical, which could actually be described as “property”. It’s like owning a patent for a hyperlinked images.

    Here’s a link that strikes me as being appropriate: Winning Edge at a site named millionaire republicans.

  3. hardymacia

    I actually thought the whole article was good. From the title I thought it was a negative piece, but the “hustler” is like Pete Rose (ignore the gambling connections), but Pete Rose was the baseball player known as “Charlie Hussle” because even when he got walked he ran down to first base. It shows Root as someone who keeps going until he reaches his goal and he does it with enthusiasm.

    Root is a guy with portrayed with big goals and works hard to accomplish them. He was the only candidate for the LP nomination that tried personally calling each delegate. As the article shows, it paid off for him with initial number of delegates that voted for him.

  4. pdsa

    @ hardymacia – Many Las Vegans consider , “sports tout”, to be synonymous with “conman”. That is however, a positive assessment when compared alongside an assessment of an internet sports tout’s customer, who would lose a game of wits with a gastropod as an opponent.

    Here’s some excerpts from Winning Edge International/Inc’s 10KSB SEC filing for 7/31/07>

    We were originally incorporated in Nevada in 1986. We reincorporated in Massachusetts in 1987 and reincorporated in Delaware in 1996. In July 2001, we acquired our sports handicapping business, which we operate through our wholly-owned subsidiary, Global SportsEDGE, Inc., a Delaware corporation.

    Effective August 22, 2002, we changed our name to GWIN, Inc….

    Effective September 21, 2006 the company changed its name to Winning Edge International, Inc….

    n September 2007, the Company completed the sale of all of the Company’s operating assets, including the business of Global SportsEDGE, Inc. to PLC (“Betbrokers”). Management of the Company had determined it was unable to support the Company’s ongoing expenses and repay debt. Management determined the Company would have to either cease operations or sell assets to a third party….

    The operating losses for the years ended July 31, 2007, and July 31, 2006 were $1,052,867 and $784,596 respectively….

    Our net losses for the years ended July 31, 2007, and July 31, 2006 were $1,198,504 and $1,204,726 respectively….

    CEO Wayne Allen Root’s cpmpensation in 2006-07 from Winning edge International was:
    2006 – $175,000 salary – $325,443 commissions
    2007 – $175,000 salary – $334,628 commissions

    In 2006-2007 Winning Edge International’s stock traded OTC in a price range between $0.01 and $0.05.

    I’m not a business expert, so I pass on any analysis, but I personally would have passed on purchasing this corporation’s equities, if an opportunity had been presented to me in the last several years.

  5. MeanoGeno

    The company that bought out Root’s company Winning Edge for 6.5M just ran out of money. Looks like they could be going under. All of root’s dreams of being ultra rich seem to be getting flushed down the toilet. Since the news last week he hasn’t been heard from by anybody. Looks like the scammer got scammed.

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